|Grade span:||8 to 12|
|Duration:||5-6 sessions, 45 to 60 minutes each|
Description:Who knows how many future reporters and newscasters you might inspire! In fact, don't be surprised if you have students in your class who are already podcasting and can help with the project. Creating podcasts allows students to experience the pleasure of sharing their work with an audience as they learn about communicating through electronic media. For example, after discussing what's been happening in their afterschool program, students might write a script for a news show that they will record and turn into a podcast, "Afterschool News."
- Research and write about current events
- Develop real-life, job-related skills
- Improving literacy skills
- Learn to work collaboratively in small groups
- Use current technology software to create a podcast
- Computer with Internet connection, projector, audio player, speakers, and large screen display or interactive whiteboard to display digital pictures (instructor)
- Software for recording your podcasts on at least one computer downloaded free from http://audacity.sourceforge.net/
- Microphone for audio recording
- An podcast network such as Education Podcast Network, which is devoted to podcasting in education.
- At least one computer with Internet access and word-processing software for every team of students
- Sample podcasts to show students
- Parent permission slips if podcasts will be published
- Adult or older student volunteers to help
If you have never tried podcasting before, don't be afraid to ask someone, maybe an older student, to help you. This type of project will excite and motivate your students. But the main point is not to be afraid to try some form of this activity, perhaps just audio at first. Your students will love you for it!
- Take the techtorial, "What’s a Podcast," on Education World or http://www.how-to-podcast-tutorial.com/13-basic-podcasting-software.htm
- Find some podcasts to show to students as examples.
- Spend time practicing with computer audio player software, podcast recording software with microphone, and podcast hosting.
What to Do:Introduce podcasts
- Determine students' familiarity with podcasts by first asking students what they like to listen to on the radio. Point out that several radio stations make their programs available for computer download by posting them on the Internet. As the discussion moves to podcasts, provide examples of programs that are shows shared only through podcasts and not the radio.
- Once students have had time to discuss podcasts, tell them they will be creating news podcasts for their afterschool program.
- Divide the class into small groups so that students can brainstorm ideas for their podcasts.
- Ask students to think of news covered on the radio and television, and in newspapers to get story ideas. Topics can include: news about their afterschool program or school, political news, sports events, interviews with students, afterschool staff, or community members, opinion pieces.
- Ask students to write notes of their ideas to use when they write their scripts. They can also record their ideas in concept maps (diagrams that they can use to organize their thoughts).
- Students will meet in their same groups to write scripts for their podcasts.
- Encourage students to think beyond the literal, such as:
- How long each segment of the podcast should last
- Order of presentation
- Music excerpts to include between segments
- Have students email you their copies of their scripts so that you can review them before taping the audio.
- The time students have for this part of the activity should limit the length of the script but monitor student writing to ensure that what they have written by the end of the session will provide appropriate material for their podcast.
- Students meet with their teams to practice reading the scripts out loud.
- Each team designates a reader for its section of the podcast.
- With the help of volunteers, students record their scripts.
- Upload podcasts to selected site.
- Invite students, parents, and community members to listen to podcasts.
- Use podcasts as an option for final presentations following a science, music, history, or language arts unit. For example, a podcast could be used to share an original play based on an historical event, much like the old radio plays with sound effects, etc.